Words: Steve Brown
Kenyan judges have ruled to continue outlawing homosexuality.
The Kenyan High Court were set to go into court to decide whether homosexuality should be decriminalised today (May 24).
And now, it has been revealed that the African country has decided to continue to uphold its archaic Penal Code of colonial rule.
The High Court ruled unanimously to uphold the colonial laws meaning someone found guilty of homosexual acts can face up to 14 years in prison.
Justice Mwita said of the ruling: “Even though the enforcement of the Penal Code is necessary to maintain law and order, such enforcement can have implications for Kenyan’s human rights.”
Outrageously, Justive Mativo claimed that petitioners had failed to provide any evidence to prove they had been discriminated against.
Mativo said: ‘Petitioners failed to provide credible evidence to demonstrate that they had been discriminated against.
“Evidence submitted showing that LGBT people have been denied healthcare services on the basis of their sexuality were general statements that did not meet the burden of proof."
Director of the Human Dignity Trust, Téa Braun, who was in court today to witness the ruling, said: “This is a huge setback for human rights in Kenya.
"The Human Dignity Trust wishes to show its solidarity and commiserate with the Kenyan activists and lawyers who have tirelessly sought justice for LGBT people through the courts.
"All Kenyan citizens are guaranteed human dignity, equality before the law and freedom from discrimination under the 2010 Constitution.
"Yet in handing down this disappointing judgment, the Court has ruled that a certain sector of society is undeserving of those rights.
"The ruling sends a dangerous signal to the other 72 countries , 35 of them in the Commonwealth, where citizens are made ‘criminals’ simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
"We hope that Kenya’s appeal courts will see fit to reverse this regressive decision in due course.”
In a tweet by Galz – an LGBTQ organisation in Zimbabwe – they wrote: “KENYA upholds Penal Code. It is done Kenya, the judges read their judgments & the Kenyan High Court has held up their draconian penal code of colonial rule that criminalizes consensual same-sex sexual conduct as neither void of vagueness nor discriminatory.”
Breaking: KENYA upholds Penal Code. It is done Kenya, the judges read their judgments & the Kenyan High Court has held up their draconian penal code of colonial rule that criminalizes consensual same-sex sexual conduct as neither void of vagueness nor discriminatory. #Repeal162 pic.twitter.com/gAo8ntwBr5— GALZ (@galzinf) May 24, 2019
More to follow...